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As we’re rounding out the end of summer vacation, the shelves at local stores are beginning to fill with crayons, pencils, backpacks and all sorts of bright and colorful school supplies to help children across the country get ready for another school year to start. Sales flyers in newspapers and magazines are pushing their back-to-school sales and discounts, and soon our social media pages will be filled with children posing with their new gear as they get on the bus to head to their first day of school.
There’s been a whole lot of excitement brewing in our household this summer as our oldest daughter is anxiously awaiting her very first day of school. We’ve been talking about all of the fun activities her teacher has planned for her and all of the new things she’ll be learning about. While many kids don’t enjoy the work that school requires, it’s my hope that my daughter will grow to love learning and the school environment in general. I fully expect for us to face some learning curves along the way as this is a completely brand new process to her, so I’ve been putting together some simple little school-themed snacks and craft projects to help make the transition a fun and smooth one.
With lunchbox-friendly snacks going on major sale during this time of year, I stocked up on a few treats like pre-made Rice Krispies treats and Oreo’s and transformed them into something fun to share with my daughter and her class as the first day of school approaches. You can certainly make a batch of homemade rice krispies treats for this project, but I spring for store-bought when I can to cut down on some of the time. During this busy time of year, it’s always my preference to work smarter and not harder!
While you’re out shopping, pick up a bag of yellow and red chocolate candy melts. They’re typically located in the craft section of the store, and they’re great to have on hand for food crafts just like these. I also ordered a pack of food-grade edible ink markers to create the lines on the rulers. They’re perfect for writing little notes or drawing pictures on snacks and sandwiches, too!
I started by melting 2 handfuls of yellow candy melts into a microwave safe bowl. For the rulers, I left the rice krispie treats as the were and simply dipped the top layer only into the chocolate. Using a butter knife, I smoothed over the chocolate and allowed it to fully dry on a piece of wax paper. For the pencils, I took a pizza cutter and cut one end of the treats into a triangular shape before dipping into the chocolate and smoothing over.
Once the chocolate was dry, I used my food-grade markers and drew a ruler design for the ruler treats and I also colored in the tips of the pencils. I added a small dab of chocolate to the other end of the pencils and added pink sprinkles to create an eraser. These took just a few minutes to dry, and they will keep for a few days in an air-tight container so you can make a large batch and include them in a lunch box each day of the week!
To make the candy apples, I melted a handful of red candy melts in a bowl and dipped the Oreo into it on each side. I used a knife to smooth over the chocolate on the front and to also fill in the gaps on the sides of the cookie. This process will require you to get your hands in the chocolate just a bit, but they come out so cute that it’s definitely worth it! Besides, who’s really going to complain about having a little chocolate on their hands?
While the red chocolate is still wet, I added in half of a pretzel stick for the stem, and I purchased a few leaf food picks online to use as a garnish. If you’re unable to find them, you can slice a small piece of green taffy to use as the leaf. For added fun, you can even insert a lollipop stick and turn these into apple lollipops! While these sweet treats are a fun addition to a lunchbox, they’re also perfect for after school snacks, first day of school snacks, or a fun handmade treat to share with a child’s teacher or other school staff members! If your child is old enough, they can even help prepare the treats as they await the first day of school.
If you have children that are heading back to school this month, add a little bit of excitement to their lunchbox or snack time by making these school-themed treats. It’s an easy way to add a little sweetness to the start of the school year!